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Building Capacity and Exploring Tactics in the Human Rights Field

Human Rights Masters student Shelby Ankrom put her learning from Professor Barb Frey's Human Rights Advocacy course into practice during her summer internship at the Center for Victims of Torture (CVT). While supporting CVT's New Tactics in Human Rights program, Shelby used her knowledge from Professor Frey's course and the experience working closely with New Tactics training materials to better understand the wide variety of human rights advocacy tactics available to practitioners. In this piece, Shelby shares some of her most salient takeaways from her time at CVT and the ways in which she sees her internship as a stepping stone to future professional positions.
A headshot of Fadumo Osman

Creating Space for Local Involvement

MPP student Fadumo Osman has incorporated human rights scholarship into her studies through the Human Rights Minor curriculum. She was able to dig into this even more during her summer internship with UN-Habitat in Kenya in their Human Rights Mainstreaming Program. In this piece, Fadumo shares the way her role in the Housing Department of the program helped her to learn and grow into a more seasoned human rights practitioner.
large poster paper with many post it notes in a variety of colors

Human Rights Initiative Call For Proposals

We are excited to announce the third year of Human Rights Initiative (HRI) Research Funding for faculty research projects that are designed to advance the study and protection of human rights. The HRI calls on faculty from the University of Minnesota to submit, by October 17, 2018, one-year funding proposals for grants between $10,000 and $50,000 that promote the scholarly and artistic activities of the faculty and their graduate students and that foster academic excellence in the field of human rights at the global and local levels.
Side view of Arvonne Fraser, with blurred background, speaking at the University of Minnesota

A tribute to Arvonne Fraser, women's rights visionary

We express our sorrow at the loss of Arvonne Fraser, who died on August 7, 2018.  Fraser was a visionary, a leader and a friend to the human rights community in Minnesota and around the world. She was, and will continue to be, a role model and mentor for generations of human rights activists. Barbara Frey, director of the Human Rights Program, observed, “Arvonne’s steadfast moral leadership through every phase of her life inspired us deeply, here in Minnesota and around the world.”
Professor V. V. "Sugi" Ganeshananthan

Human Rights Initiative Spotlight: Using storytelling to capture nuances of the...

A 2017 Human Rights Initiative grantee and faculty member in the Department of English, Professor Ganeshananthan began to explain the thirty-year conflict—from 1983 to 2009—between Sri Lankan government security forces and the Tamil militants, specifically the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).
Graphic with icons representing human rights

Program supports 16 students working in human rights this summer

From Minneapolis to Nairobi, our students are participating in human rights work across the globe. This summer, the Human Rights Program is providing funding to 15 students working in human rights placements where they are gaining hands-on experience in areas of individual interest, such as women’s rights, impunity around enforced disappearances, and refugee issues.
Fraser fellows Ryan Atkinson and Anishaa Kamesh

HRP Congratulates the Inaugural Recipients of the Fraser Human Rights...

The Human Rights Program congratulates Ryan Atkinson and Anishaa Kamesh, the inaugural recipients of the Fraser Human Rights Undergraduate Fellowships. Created this past spring, the fellowships are named after Donald and Arvonne Fraser—two groundbreaking leaders in human rights both locally and abroad. Through the fellowships we are investing in the next generation of human rights leaders by providing undergraduate students the opportunity to work in top human rights organizations.
Nico Ramos Flores standing outside, with University of Minnesota sign, trees and bushes in background

Working Across Disciplinary Fields

Nico Ramos Flores, a Spanish and Portuguese Studies Ph.D. candidate, is writing his dissertation on Afro-Caribbean/Afro-Latino literature. Yet, Nico recently crossed into a new disciplinary field to work with Professor Greta Friedemann-Sanchez on her project, “Family Commissioners: Fostering Justice, Security and Peace in Colombian Families in the Post-Conflict Era” (COLPAZ).
A map of El Salvador.

The Fragile State: Professor McNamara's Research on IDPs in El Salvador

Professor Patrick McNamara formulated his Human Rights Initiative Grant-funded project, “From IDPs to Refugees: Forced Migration in El Salvador," to investigate the issue of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in El Salvador. Rampant gang violence, endemic poverty, lack of a proper social safety net, and the constant risk of natural disaster threatens to drastically raise the number of internally displaced persons, which already sits in the tens of thousands.
An image of Gemechu Mekonnen

Researching Their Future: What Professor Creamer's RAs Learned Through Their...

The Human Rights Initiative Grants supported RAs Kayla Goldfarb and Gemechu Mekonnen as they contributed research to Professor Creamer's project on self-reporting with human rights treaties. They not only learned about the human rights-focused work, but also what they hope to do with their careers after they achieve their respective degrees.
Kathryn Sikkink speaking in front of an audience at the McNamara Alumni Center on March 7, 2018.

A Hopeful Evening

On March 7, 2018, University of Minnesota Regents Professor Emerita Kathryn Sikkink marked the release of her new book with an inspiring presentation and conversation at the McNamara Alumni Center detailing the effectiveness of the human rights movement.